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Wed Mar 19, 2014, 12:12 PM

 

Most rational hypothesis on missing Malaysian 777 so far

http://www.wired.com/autopia/2014/03/mh370-electrical-fire/

There has been a lot of speculation about Malaysia Airlines Flight 370. Terrorism, hijacking, meteors. I cannot believe the analysis on CNN; it’s almost disturbing. I tend to look for a simpler explanation, and I find it with the 13,000-foot runway at Pulau Langkawi.

The left turn is the key here. Zaharie Ahmad Shah1 was a very experienced senior captain with 18,000 hours of flight time. We old pilots were drilled to know what is the closest airport of safe harbor while in cruise. Airports behind us, airports abeam us, and airports ahead of us. They’re always in our head. Always. If something happens, you don’t want to be thinking about what are you going to do–you already know what you are going to do. When I saw that left turn with a direct heading, I instinctively knew he was heading for an airport. He was taking a direct route to Palau Langkawi, a 13,000-foot airstrip with an approach over water and no obstacles. The captain did not turn back to Kuala Lampur because he knew he had 8,000-foot ridges to cross. He knew the terrain was friendlier toward Langkawi, which also was closer.

For me, the loss of transponders and communications makes perfect sense in a fire. And there most likely was an electrical fire. In the case of a fire, the first response is to pull the main busses and restore circuits one by one until you have isolated the bad one. If they pulled the busses, the plane would go silent. It probably was a serious event and the flight crew was occupied with controlling the plane and trying to fight the fire. Aviate, navigate, and lastly, communicate is the mantra in such situations.

There are two types of fires. An electrical fire might not be as fast and furious, and there may or may not be incapacitating smoke. However there is the possibility, given the timeline, that there was an overheat on one of the front landing gear tires, it blew on takeoff and started slowly burning. Yes, this happens with underinflated tires. Remember: Heavy plane, hot night, sea level, long-run takeoff. There was a well known accident in Nigeria of a DC8 that had a landing gear fire on takeoff. Once going, a tire fire would produce horrific, incapacitating smoke. Yes, pilots have access to oxygen masks, but this is a no-no with fire. Most have access to a smoke hood with a filter, but this will last only a few minutes depending on the smoke level. (I used to carry one in my flight bag, and I still carry one in my briefcase when I fly.)

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Arrow 86 replies Author Time Post
Reply Most rational hypothesis on missing Malaysian 777 so far (Original post)
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 OP
DanTex Mar 2014 #1
cbdo2007 Mar 2014 #2
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #7
cbdo2007 Mar 2014 #36
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #70
sufrommich Mar 2014 #3
Agschmid Mar 2014 #5
sufrommich Mar 2014 #8
CANDO Mar 2014 #81
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #9
sufrommich Mar 2014 #12
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #49
2naSalit Mar 2014 #78
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #79
2naSalit Mar 2014 #82
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #83
Agschmid Mar 2014 #14
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #25
Corgigal Mar 2014 #15
sufrommich Mar 2014 #17
Corgigal Mar 2014 #22
sufrommich Mar 2014 #23
randome Mar 2014 #29
sufrommich Mar 2014 #31
Recursion Mar 2014 #24
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #26
Recursion Mar 2014 #27
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #56
Common Sense Party Mar 2014 #53
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #54
Corgigal Mar 2014 #10
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #30
Agschmid Mar 2014 #4
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #20
flamingdem Mar 2014 #6
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #13
pnwmom Mar 2014 #11
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #18
pnwmom Mar 2014 #28
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #32
pnwmom Mar 2014 #33
kentuck Mar 2014 #58
Blue_Tires Mar 2014 #16
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #19
Blue_Tires Mar 2014 #21
kentuck Mar 2014 #34
longship Mar 2014 #37
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #40
longship Mar 2014 #35
sufrommich Mar 2014 #38
longship Mar 2014 #39
sufrommich Mar 2014 #42
longship Mar 2014 #45
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #43
longship Mar 2014 #47
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #48
longship Mar 2014 #50
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #60
longship Mar 2014 #62
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #64
Tikki Mar 2014 #41
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #44
Tikki Mar 2014 #46
Renew Deal Mar 2014 #51
XRubicon Mar 2014 #52
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #55
Agschmid Mar 2014 #65
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #67
Agschmid Mar 2014 #68
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #69
Agschmid Mar 2014 #71
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #72
Agschmid Mar 2014 #66
XRubicon Mar 2014 #73
Agschmid Mar 2014 #75
XRubicon Mar 2014 #76
Agschmid Mar 2014 #77
XRubicon Mar 2014 #84
Agschmid Mar 2014 #85
XRubicon Mar 2014 #86
Glassunion Mar 2014 #57
kentuck Mar 2014 #59
Travelman Mar 2014 #61
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #63
kentuck Mar 2014 #74
Kelvin Mace Mar 2014 #80

Response to Kelvin Mace (Original post)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 12:20 PM

1. It sounds convincing but there are a few issues with it.

First of all, it doesn't square with the satellite ping that places along that large arcs based on the distance from the satellite. If it just kept going west after that first turn, then it wouldn't have been anywhere close to the ping arcs.

Also, there was a pretty good debunking of this posted on Reddit. Of course, we don't know the level of expertise of either Chris Goodfellow or this Reddit poster, so who knows, but the Reddit guy seems to make some good points.

http://www.reddit.com/r/MH370/comments/20sasb/very_concise_debunk_of_chris_goodfellows_theory/

SIGH I don't know who Chris Goodfellow is, but just having a "Class 1 License in Multi-engine planes" and 20 years experience does NOT qualify him to speak with authority on 777 systems and trans-oceanic airline operations. Heck, when I learned to fly in Canada, I had the same certifications. Mr. Goodfellow misses the mark on real-world operations, as evidenced by statements he makes in this article.
As an MD88 Captain for a major US airline, I have some pretty good experience to draw from but I certainly wouldn't want to stray into the realm of 777 systems and become another self-professed "expert" in the speculation frenzy we are seeing with regards to this incident. But some things are just really basic, and Mr. Goodfellow makes quite a few assumptions.
Where do I start?
"When I saw that left turn with a direct heading, I instinctively knew he was heading for an airport". Um, why? Why can you make that statement? There are a whole host of reasons why the aircraft FMS was programmed to make a turn. You say yourself just a paragraph or two later that "There is no point speculating further until more evidence surfaces...". Aren't you in fact "speculating"? We have far too many "speculators" as it is. The fact is, we can speculate all day as to the "who" and "why", but it's all pointless. The fact is, the aircraft turned west, away from it's planned northerly track. Why? It could be many things, but you can't say with any certainty that "he was heading for an airport".
Mr. Goodfellow states that an electrical fire first response is to "pull the main busses and restore circuits one by one until you have isolated the bad one". Actually, the first response is to don the oxygen mask and put on the smoke goggles (or some aircraft have masks/goggles in one unit). Mr. Goodfellow says "Yes, pilots have access to oxygen masks but this is a no-no with fire." GOOD LORD. He has NO IDEA what he's talking about. What are the pilots supposed to do? Hold their breath and work the checklist?? He is probably confusing the use of PASSENGER oxygen masks which, in the event of a fire in the cabin, we are trained to NOT manually deploy. Why? Because PASSENGER oxygen masks MIX cabin air with oxygen...thus, passengers would breath smoke regardless, and you're just providing oxygen to an environment where fire exists...that is bad. But with COCKPIT oxygen systems, the masks are FORCED PRESSURE and 100% oxygen is available. Yes, you ABSOLUTELY don the oxygen masks THEN work on isolating the source of the fire/smoke. Otherwise, the pilots are breathing smoke and, in no-time, the entire flight is doomed (he should know that.)
...

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Original post)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 12:32 PM

2. Who cares?? All that matters is....where is the plane??

Obviously it didn't make it to any of these other airports or landing strips. We're getting ahead of ourselves trying to figure out the solution to the mystery when we're missing 99.9% of the evidence.

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Response to cbdo2007 (Reply #2)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 12:43 PM

7. The point is, the theory would give you an indicator of where to look

 

If this theory is correct, then you look in the Indian Ocean.

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Reply #7)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 01:48 PM

36. Thanks for narrowing it down....have you alerted the news that it might be in the Indian Ocean??

You solved it man! Good job!!! woohoo

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Response to cbdo2007 (Reply #36)

Thu Mar 20, 2014, 10:40 AM

70. Your snark is appreciated by someone

 

I am sure. I am commenting on a theory promulgated by someone else, not my own. And if you had read the story rather than simply doing a drive by comment, you would see it is already being discussed in the media, much to some folks annoyance.

There are days I wonder why I bother to try and have an intelligent discussion on this board.

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Original post)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 12:36 PM

3. As an aviation expert on CNN said about this

explanation,that's a lot of time to pass with no Mayday signal. A mayday signal that takes a fraction of a second to make.

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Response to sufrommich (Reply #3)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 12:38 PM

5. +1

Even with the mantra "aviate, navigate, communicate" you still think it would shave happened.

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Response to Agschmid (Reply #5)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 12:44 PM

8. It never made any sense as an explanation.

A pilot in distress turns and heads for a closer airport without notifying the airport that it's going to attempt an emergency landing? Very unlikely.

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Response to sufrommich (Reply #8)

Fri Mar 21, 2014, 11:29 AM

81. You're right.

 

The captain who landed in the Hudson only had seconds to make crucial decisions and still found time to tell them "we'll be in the Hudson".

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Response to sufrommich (Reply #3)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 12:47 PM

9. If you electrical system is gone

 

how do you send a Mayday?

Again, not an expert, just reading this as the most plausible so far. Sooner, or later, we will find the wreckage, determine the cause, and still have a vocal minority who will claim about a dozen different reasons why it was:

1) Terrorists
2) A false flag job
3) A Chinese conspiracy
4) A US conspiracy
5) A Malaysian conspiracy
6) Aliens
7) God
8) Castro, on the grassy knoll, with a mafia hitman

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Reply #9)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 12:53 PM

12. The pilots explanation for there being no way

to contact the ground is that the flight crew may have pulled the busses. If so,contacting the ground before disabling the means of communication would make even more sense.

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Response to sufrommich (Reply #12)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 03:57 PM

49. Depends of the sequence of events

 

In an emergency your priorities are:

1) Keep the plane in the air.

2) Find a safe place to land

3) Communicate with the ground

If there is a sudden fire alert, you deal with that first, which in the case of an electrical fire means pull the plug on the suspected circuit.

You then execute a course to the nearest airfield that can handle your situation. If you are on fire, heavy with fuel, you need a runway that can handle your plane. You set your course, then go back to getting the fire under control. If the fire has damaged your communications, then you may not be able to explain your emergency to the ground. If you are then overcome by the emergency, you no longer control the plane and it flies on autopilot until it runes out of fuel or the fire destroys the plane's ability to stay in the air.

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Reply #49)

Thu Mar 20, 2014, 11:44 PM

78. I don't buy this scenario

for a couple simple reasons...

1) the airport in question looks really close to civilization, so after all this time nobody has notified anyone else that it hit the ground there, you know, folks in the area who were on the ground to begin with?

2) with all the searching going on in the first week, the plane would certainly have been noticed by a couple days' passing including wreckage debris and probably a lot of fuel on the surface.

Neither of those things have come to pass and we're nearing the end of week 2.

Seriously, fire or not, the plane landing that close or going into the water that close to land in that particular area would have been found by now and we'd have moved on to some other topic in our global short attention-span theater.


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Response to 2naSalit (Reply #78)

Fri Mar 21, 2014, 10:43 AM

79. Again

 

1) Course was set for this airport.

2) Crew was overcome by smoke.

3) Plane kept on flying until it ran out of fuel in the middle of the Indian Ocean.

Makes WAY more sense than, black holes, raptures, the Bermuda Triangle (apparently on vacation in Asia), inter-dimensional portals, ect.

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Reply #79)

Fri Mar 21, 2014, 05:16 PM

82. And I never suggested

any of the "alternative" concepts you mention here. I still don't think the OP article scenario seems more likely than even those which you eschew.

Keep trying, you'll find the answer eventually, the race to be the first seems to be very compelling for so many.

Have fun.

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Response to 2naSalit (Reply #82)

Fri Mar 21, 2014, 05:19 PM

83. Wasn't suggesting you were

 

promulgating those theories, simply stating, as I did in the first post, that it was a far more rational explanation than what I was reading so far.

Just my opinion, which along with $5 will get you an overpriced coffee at Starbucks.

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Reply #9)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 12:55 PM

14. If your electrical system is gone how does the plane fly for 5+ more hours?

Change altitude... change headings... send satellite signals... avoid land obstacles... you know the normal stuff.

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Response to Agschmid (Reply #14)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 01:16 PM

25. Depends on which systems are damaged,

 

which have battery backups and which have intact wiring. All variables in an electrical fire.

A pilot of my acquaintance said pulling the busses (electrical breakers) is standard reaction to a suspected electrical fire in an attempt to isolate the faulty circuit. The flight transponder/ACARS may have been on that circuit, but the autopilot and engines were not. If the pilots undertook emergency procedures (changing course for the nearest landing field capable of handling a fuel-heavy 777 in distress, climbing/diving to try and extinguish flames) they could then have lost consciousness and the plane could have continued on autopilot until it ran out of fuel.

Sooner or later, the plane will turn up, and we will find out the true story. The Air France flight lost over the Atlantic took about two years to figure out, and I recall a LOT of wild theories then.

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Reply #9)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 12:57 PM

15. depends

You can use your radio, your transponder, satellite radio, ground radio.

Or a meteor hit them and it's all for not.

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Response to Corgigal (Reply #15)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 01:02 PM

17. "or a meteor hit them"

Well that's a tantalizing thought,although the world is filled with amateur and professional skywatchers,wouldn't someone have noted a meteor entering the atmosphere?

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Response to sufrommich (Reply #17)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 01:10 PM

22. Of course,

that was my lame attempt at humor, since every other scenario been listed.

It's just odd, that no communication came from the flight. Either in voice or digital.

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Response to Corgigal (Reply #22)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 01:12 PM

23. I like the whole "a rock from outer space

did it" scenario. It would certainly make it the most interesting reason for a plane crash ever.

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Response to sufrommich (Reply #23)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 01:24 PM

29. 'Interesting'? Are you kidding? CNN would interview the fucking rock.

 

[hr][font color="blue"][center]TECT in the name of the Representative approves of this post.[/center][/font][hr]

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Response to randome (Reply #29)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 01:30 PM

31. I hope it's Wolf who does the interview .

At least the rock would be in the company of his intellectually equal counterpart.

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Reply #9)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 01:15 PM

24. They sent a radio transmission 12 minutes after they programmed the course change

So, that would have been a good time to send the mayday, for instance.

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Response to Recursion (Reply #24)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 01:18 PM

26. That is what is reported

 

Last edited Wed Mar 19, 2014, 05:48 PM - Edit history (1)

though the anonymous informant has not explained how they know that.

That said, alternate courses are programmed into flight computers as a matter of routine. Easier to do that while everything is quiet than when you are trying to keep the aircraft in the air.

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Reply #26)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 01:20 PM

27. But they aren't programmed with a deadman's switch

Which is what this theory requires. They're programmed as backup bearings that have to be actively selected -- which implies working electronics.

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Response to Recursion (Reply #27)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 05:49 PM

56. No, but the alternate

 

course can be triggered quickly and the course laid in automatically while the flight crew concentrate on other issues. No dead mans' switch required.

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Reply #9)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 04:34 PM

53. I'm pretty sure the order came to "pull 777" and the CIA blew it with thermite.

And then they shot a missile into the Pentagon.

















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Response to Common Sense Party (Reply #53)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 05:45 PM

54. You forgot their accompice

 

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Response to sufrommich (Reply #3)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 12:49 PM

10. That's the biggest problem

No communications, to anyone about anything. Odd.

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Response to Corgigal (Reply #10)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 01:26 PM

30. It happens

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1999_South_Dakota_Learjet_crash

(Scroll down for some other examples)

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Original post)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 12:38 PM

4. Why is this "rational"... it does not make any sense?

There a multiple reports which easily "prove" this wrong?

Why is this being reported, I don't get it?

I use "prove" lightly because as someone else pointed out we won't know until we have the plane really.

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Response to Agschmid (Reply #4)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 01:06 PM

20. Agreed

 

when we find the wreckage, answers will be provided to the annoyance of many with pet theories.

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Original post)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 12:40 PM

6. How about a combo of this theory and

the idea that someone brought a device that made it happen so fast there was no time for Mayday and just enough to chose the backup flight plan.

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Response to flamingdem (Reply #6)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 12:54 PM

13. Possible

 

but we will know when they find the plane.

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Original post)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 12:51 PM

11. But why did they fly off course for 5 hours with a fire going on?

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #11)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 01:03 PM

18. If the crew was incapacitated by smoke

 

the autopilot could have kept the plane flying until it ran out of fuel.

We had a situation a while back when something similar happened:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1999_South_Dakota_Learjet_crash

In this case, it wasn't a fire, but cabin depressurization.

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Reply #18)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 01:20 PM

28. I thought the auto-pilot had been turned off. And weren't there several changes

in altitude over the period of time? Would an auto-pilot have done that?

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #28)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 01:35 PM

32. They could have taken these manuevers then succumbed

 

to smoke, lack of oxygen, etc after the maneuvers, re-engaging the autopilot before the lost consciousness.

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Reply #32)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 01:38 PM

33. But over all those hours? Hard to imagine, for me at least. n/t

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #33)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 08:09 PM

58. I agree...

I think it was intentionally diverted. I think it was easier to do at night. If your plan is to kill everyone on board, including yourself, why go to all the convoluted maneuvers? Why not just crash it in the ocean??

Did the computer program itself to make a U-turn? What about the nine witnesses on the ground that saw a plane (or something with lights) flying very low over their village?

I think it would take a very evil mind to plan such a tragedy.

If they were to plan meticulously all the details, such as turning off the radios and transponders, why would the plan not include a place to land the plane? Why could they not refuel and put different markings on the plane?

If no one has heard from the passengers, then we are led to believe that they are either being held hostage somewhere or they have all died in the middle of the ocean?

It is rather fatalistic to give up hope at this time, in my humble opinion.

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Original post)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 01:01 PM

16. I debunked it in another thread

other scenarios are far more likely....

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Response to Blue_Tires (Reply #16)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 01:04 PM

19. A link to the thread please

 

I am always open to other opinions if I can find them

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Reply #19)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 01:08 PM

21. here...

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Original post)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 01:40 PM

34. A question?

Is it possible to parachute out of a 777? Is there a separate exit from the cabin?

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Response to kentuck (Reply #34)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 01:50 PM

37. I wonder if they have "Saucer Separation".

One never knows.

Saucer Separation

I mean, if we're going to make shit up, we can at least make it good.

On edit: I have visual...

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Response to kentuck (Reply #34)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 02:02 PM

40. Generally not

 

at altitudes above 10,000 the cabin is pressurized and only Thor is going to be able to open the door. Depressurized, it is possible ala D.B. Cooper, if you are flying in a 727 which has a rear-facing exit.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/D._B._Cooper#Hijacking

Jumping out of 777 will almost certainly get you killed. Going out a side door means you risk going into an engine or striking the wing (front of plane), or the tail/horizontal stabilizer (rear of plane). Even if you survive clearing the plane, jumping in the dead of night without a clearly visible landing zone is an entirely different obstacle.

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Original post)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 01:47 PM

35. The most rational hypothesis is "I don't know"

Anything else goes beyond what little data one has at their fingertips.

It is alright to say "I do not know. There is insufficient data to make a determination."

Why can't people just say it?

Because they want to make shit up? Often that's it.

Your narrative, although reasonable, also goes beyond the data, albeit not as much as others. Kudos to you for that.

But I would just say, "I don't know."

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Response to longship (Reply #35)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 01:52 PM

38. A good chunk of the internets is made up of

people speculating about stuff they're not actually involved in. So what?

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Response to sufrommich (Reply #38)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 01:58 PM

39. What does that gain?

I mean other than people flapping their gums about something of which they are utterly ignorant. I suppose if that is ones goal, have at it. But I was kind of thinking about the people who have loved ones on that flight and how they may feel about all the utter bullshit being put forth on this story.

This is a complex situation which will likely not be easily resolved. Making shit up helps nothing other than assuaging ones ego. I wish people would find a better way of doing that.

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Response to longship (Reply #39)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 02:05 PM

42. I don't pretend that commenting on threads

on DU or any other forum is done for any type of gain. You're on a discussion forum complaining about people "flapping their gums" which is pretty much the bread and butter of internet forums. Entering a thread to complain that people are talking about something you don't want to talk about is silly,it's pretty simple to stay out of threads that you don't have any personal interest in,I do it all the time.

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Response to sufrommich (Reply #42)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 02:18 PM

45. You have a point, to some extent.

But none of the speculations I have seen will likely prove to be what happened.

And I do find this story very interesting, which is why I post in these threads. However, I am interested in it because I want to know what actually happened, not some cockamamie, half-baked conjecture. As I inquired, what the hell good does that do? I would say, none at all.

If one has information, that's one thing, but these speculative narratives do no good, unless one is possibly writing an Airport 2014 movie script.

And this discussion board's SOP specifically forbids conspiracy theories in the GD forum. So forgive me if I stand in support of that rule. Speculative narratives come close to that line.

Thanks for your response.
Best regards.

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Response to longship (Reply #35)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 02:15 PM

43. Insufficient data

 

to make a determination, yes, a hypothesis, no.

de·ter·mi·na·tion
noun \di-ˌtər-mə-ˈnā-shən\

a : a judicial decision settling and ending a controversy
b : the resolving of a question by argument or reasoning
c : the act of officially deciding something

hy·poth·e·sis
noun \hī-ˈpä-thə-səs\

a : an idea or theory that is not proven but that leads to further study or discussion
b : an assumption or concession made for the sake of argument
c : an interpretation of a practical situation or condition taken as the ground for action
d : a tentative assumption made in order to draw out and test its logical or empirical consequences

Do I know what happened? No, I don't. I have read an article than seems to me a more rational hypothesis than the many being promulgated in the media. Am I correct in supporting this hypothesis? I don't know, and will not until the wreckage is found and people with far greater expertise than me evaluate the evidence and form a conclusion.

No snark intended, but the hypothesis is the foundation of the scientific method of inquiry.

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Reply #43)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 02:28 PM

47. A hypothesis must not multiply entities unnecessarily.

That's from William of Okham (14th century). His razor would give these so-called hypotheses (as some call them) a close shave, so to speak.

In other words, a hypothesis must not speculate beyond the data, or add entities not supported by the data.

I'm sorry, my friend.

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Response to longship (Reply #47)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 03:33 PM

48. But we are not discussing efficiency of reasoning

 

William of Okham came up with an approach to handling multiple hypothesis efficiently. But I never claimed that the article I read was the most efficient, but rather the most rational of those I had seen promulgated in my opinion.

Given that many "facts" are in dispute, we are at a major disadvantage when trying to efficiently reason the correct hypothesis, which is why I stated my opinion on the "rationality" of the hypothesis presented in Wired!.

I know that may seem pedantic , but I do try to choose my words carefully around here.

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Reply #48)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 04:19 PM

50. If one goes beyond the facts, making stuff up, one is not being parsimonious.

Okham's razor slices it off. No matter how many or few other hypotheses there are.

Thou shalt not unnecessarily multiply entities.

And you do not have to apologize for pedantry to me.


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Response to longship (Reply #50)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 09:11 PM

60. I don't see the fellow made anything up

 

He postulated a hypothesis that fits the known facts, few though they are.

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Reply #60)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 11:16 PM

62. Where is the evidence for a fire?

All there is now is a missing airliner, and very little tantalizing and puzzling bits of evidence, some of which are in dispute, or are themselves speculative.

Calling that conclusive of a fire is pretty much the definition of multiplying entities unnecessarily. If people don't see that, there's not much hope for them.

Yes, it could have been a fire. But it could also be any number of other things. What Okham informs us to do in this situation is to throw up our arms and say, "I don't know. We need more information." It's not "Well, in my imagination there's this fire..."

Sorry, my friend.

Regards.

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Response to longship (Reply #62)

Thu Mar 20, 2014, 09:33 AM

64. Gosh, why would anyone ponder a possible fire

 

in a Boeing aircraft?

http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424127887324425204578601752534401168
http://www.cnn.com/2014/01/14/travel/787-dreamliner/
http://www.bbc.com/news/business-21038128
http://seattletimes.com/html/businesstechnology/2012232676_apuscockpitfires.html
http://www.avherald.com/h?article=44078aa7&opt=0
http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/443787/Horror-as-pilot-accidentally-broadcasts-Mayday-call-to-cabin-as-cockpit-fills-with-smoke
http://www.usatoday.com/story/travel/flights/2013/05/09/boeing-777-fires/2147173/
http://www.nycaviation.com/2010/05/cockpit-fire-forces-united-757-to-make-emergency-landing-michelle-tanner-uninjured/

Then there were fires caused by window heaters that six years later was STILL awaiting final approval.

- March 2002: The first report made to NASA's Aviation Safety Reporting System - a database that encourages airline employees and other to voluntarily report safety problems - of a Boeing 757 cockpit fire related to the window heater. The airline determines the cause was a loose screw.

- January 2004: A fire erupts near the cockpit window heat terminal of an Air Greenland 757. Four days later a cockpit fire in an American Airlines 757 prompts an emergency landing. Boeing tells the National Transportation Safety Board and the FAA the two incidents are similar to at least four previous incidents involving 747, 757, 767 and 777 planes.

- March 2004: Using windows removed from the American and Air Greenland planes, investigators determine a loose cross-threaded screw is causing electrical arcing; ASRS sends out the first of four safety alerts regarding window heater problems in the 757.

- May 2, 2004: An American 757 en route from Miami to Venezuela experiences a cockpit window fire. A cross-threaded screw is determined to be the cause. Boeing tells the NTSB a service bulletin for the 757 will be issued by September 2004.

- Mid-2004: Boeing begins making planes with a redesigned cockpit window that uses a pin-socket connector rather than a screw. The company says it will issue service bulletins recommending windows on existing 747, 757, 767 and 777 planes be replaced with the new design. The FAA says that once Boeing issues service bulletins, the agency will order airlines to inspect planes for the cross-threaded screw and replace damaged windows.

- January 2005: With service bulletins for 757s and other models still not issued, Boeing provides a schedule: March 10, 2005, for 757 and 767s bulletins; July 7, 2005, for the 747 bulletin. The FAA again promises to make the service bulletins mandatory after they are issued.

- February 2006: Service bulletins have not been issued. Boeing and the FAA tell the NTSB the cause of the delay is a "minor" disagreement over the wording of the bulletins.

- April 23, 2006: An American 757 diverts to John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York because of smoke in the cockpit. An inspection finds a short in the window heater due to a cross-threaded screw.

- June-August 2006: Boeing issues service bulletins for the 747, 757, and 777 models. A 767 service bulletin continues to be delayed due to the Boeing-FAA disagreement.

- Sept. 4, 2007: The NTSB sends the FAA a letter expressing concern that there is no safety order making the service bulletins mandatory. The board recommends the FAA approve Boeing's draft service bulletin for the 767 and order airlines to replace windows in the 747, 757, 767 and 777 planes with the new design.

Jan. 30, 2008: An American 757 suffers heavy cockpit smoke and a shattered window while over the Atlantic Ocean and makes an emergency landing in Palm Beach, Fla. Both pilots, three flight attendants and a passenger are treated for smoke inhalation.

March 13, 2008: The FAA proposes a safety order affecting 1,212 U.S.-registered planes. The order gives airlines a choice between the old window design plus regularly scheduled inspections or the new window design without inspections. It would apply to 757, 767 and 777 models, but not 747s.

April 2008: The NTSB recommends the proposed order be expanded to include 747s, and that airlines be required to install the new windows. Some airlines object to the FAA's proposal, saying the agency has misidentified the problem.

May 16, 2010: A cockpit fire aboard a United Airlines 757 prompts an emergency landing. FAA officials says they will expedite final approval of the proposed safety order.


It is quite proper consider fire in any hypothesis concerning a Boeing aircraft, especially in light of the history of fires involving the 757/767/777 and 787 aircraft.

Also, to re-iterate, I never claimed the theory was the most likely, or efficient, but the most RATIONAL. In other words, Okham has bloody all to do with it, mate.

This maxim, as interpreted by Bertrand Russell,[14] states that if one can explain a phenomenon without assuming this or that hypothetical entity, there is no ground for assuming it, i.e. that one should always opt for an explanation in terms of the fewest possible causes, factors, or variables.

We have PLENTY of "grounds" to consider fire on a Boeing aircraft.

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Original post)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 02:03 PM

41. All these speculations, and some are pretty damn sick, remind me of the 1989 USS IOWA gun turret...

explosion and how the Navy blamed it on the sailor who packed the weapon turret and how
he must have done it on purpose…and yadda, yadda some stupid story that proved to be wrong.

Lies and untruths hurt families.

Tikki

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Response to Tikki (Reply #41)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 02:18 PM

44. I agree

 

but the hypothesis here doesn't impugn anyone's reputation. Which is why I am willing to discuss it.

I will not dignify speculations about terrorists, suicides, aliens, godly raptures without extraordinary evidence.

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Reply #44)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 02:23 PM

46. And I agree with you…it is with the odds and makes the most sense…sad as it may turn out..

I do hope all is known…but the truth only.


Tikki

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Original post)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 04:26 PM

51. This story is old and predates the computer direction change information

So it's not really relevant at this point.

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Original post)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 04:30 PM

52. Past performance is usually a good indicator of future performance

777 has had at least one cockpit fire.

If something like this happened in flight, it would be catastrophic.

http://www.avherald.com/h?article=44078aa7&opt=0

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Response to XRubicon (Reply #52)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 05:46 PM

55. And everybody seems to be forgetting

 

the 787 battery fires.

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Reply #55)

Thu Mar 20, 2014, 09:39 AM

65. No... I don't think anyone one of us forget those.

That being said this plane was planned and built more than a decade before those, and in recent history the 777 has had no issue with battery power and does not even use a similar battery system at least on the 777-200 which this plane was.

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Response to Agschmid (Reply #65)

Thu Mar 20, 2014, 10:15 AM

67. As I mention in another post

 

There have been problems with cockpit fires in the 757/767/777 dating back to 2004 on a window heating unit that still had not been repaired in all aircraft as 2010.

http://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=view_post&forum=1002&pid=4695933

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Reply #67)

Thu Mar 20, 2014, 10:22 AM

68. Let's put it this way...

Cockpit fires happen, almost on all planes I bet we could find a case? Right?

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Response to Agschmid (Reply #68)

Thu Mar 20, 2014, 10:35 AM

69. Yes, but the Boeing 57/67/77

 

series have had repeated fires linked to the same problem (window heaters) that Boeing and the FAA have taken their sweet time correcting. When they drag their feet on fixing KNOWN problems discussed extensively in the media, what else is lurking in the files that hasn't been a major media event for six years that they have ignored?

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Reply #69)

Thu Mar 20, 2014, 12:03 PM

71. A fire in a windshield wiper motor does not...

Kill all communication, I just don't believe that they would have said nothing. I'm sorry.

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Response to Agschmid (Reply #71)

Thu Mar 20, 2014, 12:37 PM

72. *sigh*

 

I didn't say this was the same type of fire. The original story hypothesized that a fire could have knocked out communications. Folks then start telling me that a fire could not have happened, when, in fact, these jets have had electrical fires in the past.

I give up.

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Response to XRubicon (Reply #52)

Thu Mar 20, 2014, 09:41 AM

66. Yes it would be.

In fact it would be so catastrophic the plane could not have flown on for multiple hours and all electrical systems would have been effected, which would not allow further signals to be sent.

All "evidence" pretty much points away from this theory at this point.

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Response to Agschmid (Reply #66)

Thu Mar 20, 2014, 08:01 PM

73. So you know how long it flew?

Have you been in touch with CNN?

Tell me more about "signals" being sent from the cockpit, I am intrigued. Do the engines shut off if there is a fire in the cockpit? Do the flight controls move to make the plane do a nose dive?

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Response to XRubicon (Reply #73)

Thu Mar 20, 2014, 08:51 PM

75. Didn't say I did know.

Everything at this point is a guess, even your theory whatever that might be.

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Response to Agschmid (Reply #75)

Thu Mar 20, 2014, 09:04 PM

76. I must have misunderstood you

"the plane could not have flown on for multiple hours and all electrical systems would have been effected, which would not allow further signals to be sent."

I guess that means you don't know what happened. My bad.

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Response to XRubicon (Reply #76)

Thu Mar 20, 2014, 09:06 PM

77. Thanks for the apology.

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Response to Agschmid (Reply #77)

Fri Mar 21, 2014, 09:21 PM

84. you are welcome!

Now a word from our sponsor that you will find important every time you look in the mirror.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dunning%E2%80%93Kruger_effect

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Response to XRubicon (Reply #84)

Fri Mar 21, 2014, 11:33 PM

85. I hope you enjoy that feeling you get when you put someone down.

Sure seems to come naturally to you, except here is the deal this is the internet and most people don't take what you (or anyone) says to seriously.

Enjoy!

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Response to Agschmid (Reply #85)

Fri Mar 21, 2014, 11:59 PM

86. Thank you so much

Enjoy your life!

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Original post)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 06:34 PM

57. If the pilot was turning to head towards a close airport with friendly terrain

why would they not simply do a 180, and fly to the closest airport - Sultan Mahmud Airport? They actually flew almost directly over it on their way north out of the country. It has an ocean approach, so terrain would be a non issue. The runway is well over the landing requirements at 11,400 feet. The airline also operates out of that airport.

Friendly water approach, no terrain, and a nice long runway and

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Response to Glassunion (Reply #57)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 08:12 PM

59. Maybe if they can find the files that were deleted on the simulator?

They may have an idea of what happened?

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Original post)

Wed Mar 19, 2014, 10:57 PM

61. Too soon?

[IMG][/IMG]

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Response to Travelman (Reply #61)

Thu Mar 20, 2014, 09:02 AM

63. Yeah,

 

too soon.

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Original post)

Thu Mar 20, 2014, 08:12 PM

74. If you were writing a movie script...

...knowing what we know now, which is not a whole lot, how would we have the story end??

How will we ever know the truth if we do not hold out hope? What if we never find out there was a fire? Does it simply end as a mystery to us all?

If no one comes forward, not even one passenger on the plane, how can we not assume the worst has come upon these poor souls?

But what kind of insanity, with malice aforethought, would commit such an act? Or is it just evil?

Why?

Why?

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Response to kentuck (Reply #74)

Fri Mar 21, 2014, 11:15 AM

80. We may have to live with the mystery.

 

Human's have a VERY hard time accepting that this could end up a mystery with all the technology we currently have. However, people need to wake up to the reality that:

1) To save money, much of our technology is pretty useless. For example, if we find the wreckage, the cockpit voice recorder will probably tell us nothing, since it only has a two hour capacity, and records over itself after that. So, whatever happened in the first two hours on the flight deck is lost forever. We have the ability to record more than two hours. We have the ability to stream data in real time, but we WILL NOT because it would cost money, and profit is more important than people's lives and safety.

2) We are far more interested in spying on our own people and recording their calls than we are tracking commercial airliners with the intent of finding them if they suffer an emergency.

3) Our technology is of dubious reliability these days and subject to the whims of profit. This was not always the case. Consider the fact that we can still communicate with the Voyager Space Probe we launched 37 years ago that is currently a trillion kilometers from Earth, but the iPhone you bought yesterday cannot be reliably expected to call another iPhone ten feet away in the next room without dropping the call.

4) When we launched Voyager, most people though we would have a base on the moon by now. Instead, NASA no longer has any functional spacecraft that could get an astronaut into orbit, never mind the moon. Cost-cutting and profiteering rendered our shuttle program so unreliable that we lost 40% of our fleet due to incompetence driven by greed. Now we have to hitchhike our way into space on 1970s-era technology aboard a spacecraft we used to laugh at.

5) Despite having the ability to solve the worlds energy crisis with clean, renewable tech, we choose to destroy the environment and push our civilization to collapse so that a tiny fraction of the populace (a few thousand people) can live in absolute luxury.

6) We continue to spend astronomical sums of money, economically CRIPPLING sums, on technology to kill each other. Our roads, bridges, dams, schools and water supplies have become more decrepit each year, but our prisons are shiny new.

If we fail to find this aircraft, it will not be because we didn't have the ability, it will be because we didn't wish to divert the resources from more profitable projects to have the capability.

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